Nicotine is the addictive drug in tobacco smoke that causes smokers to continue to smoke. Addicted smokers need enough nicotine over a day to ‘feel normal’ – to satisfy cravings or control their mood. How much nicotine a smoker needs determines how much smoke they are likely to inhale, no matter what type of cigarette they smoke. Along with nicotine, smokers inhale about 7,000 other chemicals in cigarette smoke. Many of these chemicals come from burning tobacco leaf. Some of these compounds are chemically active and trigger profound and damaging changes in the body. Tobacco smoke contains over 60 known cancer-causing chemicals. Smoking harms nearly every organ in the body, causing many diseases and reducing health in general
Justify Health:Effects of smoking on babies The effects of maternal smoking on an unborn baby include: increased risk of miscarriage, stillbirth and premature birth low birth weight, which may have a lasting effect of the growth and development of children. Low birth weight is associated with an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, being overweight and diabetes in adulthood increased risk of cleft palate and cleft lip paternal smoking can also harm the fetus if the non-smoking mother is exposed to second-hand smoke. If a parent continues to smoke during their baby’s first year of life, the child has an increased risk of ear infections, respiratory illnesses such as pneumonia and bronchitis, sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and meningococcal disease.
Diseases caused by long-term smoking A lifetime smoker is at high risk of developing a range of potentially lethal diseases, including: cancer of the lung, mouth, nose, larynx, tongue, nasal sinus, oesophagus, throat, pancreas, bone marrow (myeloid leukaemia), kidney, cervix, ovary, ureter, liver, bladder, bowel and stomach lung diseases such as chronic bronchitis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, which includes obstructive bronchiolitis and emphysema coronary artery disease, heart disease, heart attack and stroke ulcers of the digestive system osteoporosis and hip fracture poor blood circulation in feet and hands, which can lead to pain and, in severe cases, gangrene and amputation.